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in the morning, and at the end of the day, they're dead. >> with them, street to stree, as they fight assad's army. >> we are returning now, after the attack. it just shows you how brave they are, and at the same time, how disorganized they are. >> guardicorrespondent for frontlinghaith abdul-ahad, takes you inside the battle for syria. and later tonight, the regime responds. >> the regime now is bombarding civilian neighborhoods with artillery, with tank fire, and with fighter bombers. >> how is president bashar al-assad holding on to power? >> the iranians are gaining influence in syria now by the day. >> and what will happen if asd falls? >> there is definitely increasing worry in the united states administration about in whose hands these weapons are falling. >> these two stories on this special edition frontline. >> frontline is made possible by contributions to your pbs station from viewers like you. thank you. and by the corporation for public broadcasting. major funding is provided by the john d. and catherine t. macarthur foundation, committed to building a more just, verdant
. it's working with the arab league to identify people to help force assad out of power a year after president obama said, we want assad out of power. he has substantive things to talk about on the debate stage when they debate foreign policy in two weeks and that ad is now irrelevant. >> don't you think this is a case of him saying, i'll do the things the president is trying to do but do them more effectively? >> there's a fair case to make and there's an opening for that. >> i agree. i'm not saying that's a bad thing. >> there's an opening the size of a pin drop. he didn't lay out his strategy for peace in israel. on iran, the best he could come up with was, i'm going to get tougher on iran because i'm going to have tougher sanctions. >> when barack obama came to office, he said, i'm not george w. bush, so therefore, i can negotiate with iran. >> he said he would open up all doors but he wasn't going to give you a seat at the table unless you wanted to come and talk peace. >> we have unsolicited advice on the other side of the break including helpful hints for donald trump. stay wi
, and children have been massacred by the assad regime over the past 20 months. violent extremists are flowing into the fight. our ally turkey has been attacked. the conflict threatens stability in the region. america can take pride in the blows that our military and intelligence professionals have inflicted on al qaeda, pakistan, afghanistan, including the killing of osama bin laden. these are real achievements one at a high cost. al qaeda remains a strong force, however, in yemen and somalia, libya, other parts of north africa, iraq, and now in syria, and other extremists have been ground across the region. drones and modern instruments of war are important tools in our fight, but are no substitute for national security strategy for the middle east. the president is fond of saying that the tide of war is receding. i want to believe him as much as anyone se. but when we look at the middle east today, with iran closer than ever to nuclear weapons capability, with the conflict in syria threatening to destabilize the region, and with a violent extremists on the march, and with an american ambass
to a ba shall al-assad's regime and there are some more democrat cli inclined shall we say to presumably would want to have a better relationship with the united states with the west and other friendly countries in the middle east, whether saudi arabia or qatar or some of the other countries actively involved in what's going on in syria a. the great concern the obama administration has had and the reason why the u.s. has not sought to arm the rebels is because some of those rebels may be totally opposed to the united states, maybe closer to al qaeda, for example, than to the united states, so once you start arming rebels in a major way, you're not sure where those weapons are going to wind up, and that's been the big concern of the obama administration right now. how do you make sure that the weapons you provide rebels are really going to the good guys as it were as opposed to the potential bad guys and that's not an easy question to answer. >> never. in fact, we have countless examples where this has gone awry. hold the thought for a moment. if you could stand by, i have a lot more ques
of the opposition who share our values and ensure they obtain the arms they need to defeat assad's tanks, helicopters and fighter jets. nbc's first read pointing out that reports of cia doing something covertly like this in syria. so something going on as we speak. the u.s. government did this with libya. basically arming the opposition. and you know, your men ri's men ri is only my friend for so long. is that a wise approach? >> no. i have spent time on this issue. there's no doubt providing nonlethal communication support is extraordinary important and secretary clinton announced massive amount of humanitarian assistance and ku dos to the administration for doing that. the real problem here is that there's this struggle within the romney campaign itself over syria between neo-conservatives to militarily intervene and those who actually are more reticent and the problem is that mr. romney flip flops between one group and the other and can't quite decide which one is more important. the bottom line, however, for purposes of american interest in the middle east, arming a rag tag group of
where more than 30,000 men, women and children have been massacred by assad regime over the past 20 months. violent extremists are flowing into the fight. our ally turkey has been attacked and the conflict threatens stability in the region. america can take pride in the blows that our military and intelligence professionals have inflicted on al qaeda in pakistan and afghanistan including the kill of usama bin laden. these are real achievements won at a high cost. al qaeda remains a strong force however in yemen and somalia, in libya, and other parts of north africa, in iraq and now in syria and other extremists have gained ground across the region. drones and modern instruments of war are important tools in our fight but they are no substitute for a national security strategy for the middle east. the president is fond of saying that the tide of war is receding and i want to believe him as much as anyone else but when we look at the middle east today, with iran closer than ever to nuclear weapons capability, with the conflict in syria threatening to destablize the region and with vio
of arming the syrians, finding those syrian moderates, those pro-western rebels fighting bashar al assad, that may be a new strategy on the part of romney as opposed to the obama administration which has been totally reluctant to arm any of the rebels in syria fearing those weapons could wind up in the hands of the so-called terrorist, the bad guys, if you will. that's a clear differentiation, but i think from the american political perspective, there's no great desire to get involved militarily on the ground or in the air for that matter in syria or elsewhere. >> all right. well, thank you very much. appreciate it. of course, we're fwog bring in fareed zakaria to talk about this. fareed in new york. of course, you were watching this as well, and one of the points that you brought up is that these two leaders, these two men really see eye to eye on a lot of foreign policy issues. the only one that we really heard that was different was what you had actually talked about and that was romney's stance on arming the syrian rebels. how does the united states go about doing that, because we kn
that they obtain the arms they need to defeat assad's tanks and helicopters and fighter jets. iran is sending arms to assad because they know his downfall would be a strategic defeat for him. we should be working no less vigorously through our international partners to support the many syrians who would deliver that defeat to iran, whether sitting on the sidelines. it is essential that we develop influence with those forces in syria that will one day lead a country that sits at the heart of the middle east. >> mitt romney is saying, arm the rebels. again, the question being how well do we know them, how do we know which rebels we should be arming, that's the question for you. >> the wording there is interesting. he's not saying i believe the united states should arm the rebels, he's saying we want to make sure that they obtain rebels with the help of our partners and some would argue, look, the vetting of these rebel groups is being done already by the obama administration. there are reports of a cia presence there at the border already trying to figure out who is who, who is friendly who is not s
we are working very hard with the rebel forces, and clearly as the president said, assad's days are over and they will eventually come to enhance. and so we need to be ready to support those, provide as much support to those forces as we can in the interim. i do want, if i can, just say one thing about dov's comments about iran, which is also very related to the syria issue. and he does step up the strawman about the sanctions on iran, and the 20 countries that have gotten off the hook. i think it is interesting to note that this is where the facts really do matter, that iran sanctions is a critical piece of legislation that the congress passed in the '90s to punish iran and for those who support the petroleum sector. zero companies were sanctioned by the bush administration under the iran sanctions act, in eight years, zero. when president came to office to me very aggressively moved on sanctions using existing treasury department authorities. he then worked with the congress almost immediately to sign a new comprehensive piece of legislation, of which multiple companies across
and it is distinctions that give us the complexity we need to understand the world and assad ran a brutal dictatorship but nothing like saddam hussein. i had my passport taken by the iraqi authorities when i was in iraq -- i was very nervous obviously. i only got back to the airport before i left. i was a journalist who got too close to my story and i was intent on eliminating saddam hussein. i believed like the lot of people, different western countries in the world and on both sides of the aisle that there were wm ds and i believe a regime this suffocatingly brutal you couldn't trust. you had to assume that it existed and the work turned out so miserably. had we had different generals and different strategy could have been different. you can't simply say it wouldn't have mattered no matter what we did but on the other hand a lot of the mistakes we made were implicit in the hubris of the conception because we can play counterfact wills all we want but at the end of the day you are stuck with the fact you have and you have to live with them and deal with them. >> you add up the costs. almost 5,000 ame
who share our values and assure they attain the arms they need to defeat assad's tanks, helicopters and fighter jets. >> hey, peter, you were with him all weekend and we did see a decision by the romney campaign to include in the governor's stump more personal stories. of just ways that he worked with members of for instance of his community in boston. >> yeah, i think that's right. three times in all of the events held in florida. obviously as our viewers have seen, he has largely resisted this as a democrat would say. here though, it seems like there's a genuine sense of confidence, a reinvigorated campaign. you experience that when you talk to the crowds as well. it appears to be contagious to the candidate himself. in the past, we saw crowds that were largely anti obama more than pro romney. after the debate performance, they appear to be behind mitt romney and that seems to be fuelling him giving him more confidence to tell his own story. >> mr. alexander, we'll see you on the trail. thank you, sir. >>> well, mitt romney is hoping to amplify his criticisms of the administration
there's any desire to get into a proxy war. >> indeed. michael, the president urges assad to step down. he supports arab efforts in their opposition to the syrian government. given the instability of libya and egypt, isn't the president's cautious approach to syria the right one unless, and i repeat, unless we want to get involved in another war? >> hi, martin. well, to be honest with you, i think there is a fairly narrow range of disagreement between the two men here because, as you know, if we think about this kind of a war and we think of all of our range of possible interventions, providing or asking our allies to provide a few more weapons is a relatively modest step along the spectrum. we're not talking about american planes creating a no-fly zone in the romney speech. we're not talking about creation of any kind of a humanitarian protected ground zone up in the north -- >> but, michael, i'm sorry to interrupt you, mike, but we wouldn't expect any details from this man because he never gives us any. t the overarching theme is he wants a new approach. not the approach being expedi
overwhelmingly powerful egyptian pharaoh named anwar sadat. in syria he dealt with hafez assad and in israel he dealt with golda meyer who has such a majority in the israeli parliament no one had ever heard of the likud my noorty policy. so kissinger had to deliver three people. flash forward, you're hillary clintonow. you ha to negotiate with a muslim brotherhood president of egypt who is in a -- just new to the job in a very frail and weak situation. you've got a revolution in syria, there's basically no one to deal with. you could deal with haefz but he can't deliver six blocks beyond his palace and in israel you have a minority government led baby by netanyahu that is an extreme government. it's michele bachmann 20 times over. so it's not exactly an environment conducive for great heroic foreign policy. mam tell your dughters not to grow up to secretaries of state, not now. you want to be secretary of education, not secretary of state. >> rose: (laughs) so what ought to be the foreign policy debate in this campaign? >> well, i tell you what i've been focused on and i think it's about making
own people. in theory, the assad regime reaches brutal war against its own people, even its territory slips from his grasp. i recently announced major new contributions of humanitarian aid and assistance for the civilian opposition. and we remain committed with their like-minded partners to increase pressure on the regime. and in yemen, where we supported negotiations that eventually achieved a peaceful trend vision, we are working to prevent al qaeda and other extremist from threatening these emerging, fragile, democratic institutions. and prevent them also from finding a safe haven for which to stage new attacks. and when i met with king abdullah of jordan last month, we discussed continuing reforms to move his country towards more democracy and prosperity. so when all of these places and many others, the united states is helping the people of those nations chart their own destinies and realize the full measure of their own human dignity. dignity is a word that means many things to different people and cultures, but it does speak to something universal in all of us. as one egyptian
outcome, so we are working very hard with the rebel forces and clearly as the president said, assad's days are over and they will eventually come to an end so we need to be ready to support those, provide as much support to the moderate forces as they can in the interim. i do want to, if i can, just say one thing about dov's comments about iran which are related to this issue. he does set up a strawman about the sanctions on iran and the 20 countries that have gotten off the hook. i think it's interesting to note that it does really matter. they ain't iran sanctions as a critical piece of legislation in the '90s to punish iran and for those who supported sip put petroleum. zero companies for sanctions under the iran sanctions act, zero. when the president came to office he very aggressively moved on sanctions to the existing authorities and he then worked with the congress almost immediately to sign a new comprehensive piece of legislation, of which multiple companies across the world including chinese companies and russian companies had sanctions. the 20 exemptions that dov likes to talk
. as a consequence with russia and iran still supporting assad, we have had this on going battle with probably over 20,000 civilians killed. what governor romney recommends in the speech -- in the speech is that we carefully select leaders in the opposition who we can trust and see if it is possible to support them. connell: but getting involved ourselves is not realistic, is it? i mean you support them by -- you give them arms is that what you are talking about, that kind of thing? >> right, providing assistance to those that we can identify and trust. you know, again for 18 months we haven't done that. if asked today, it would be hard to identify exactly who it would be that we could provide, even nonlethal assistance to that wouldn't result subsequently in internal bloodbath. connell: what i've picked up from romney today is a difference in tone a lot of it. if america does not lead that someone else will. that seems to be a theme throughout and then he goes through these different countries in the region, in the middle east one by one whether it's libya, egypt, we talked about syria, also menti
and libya and later on probably when assad falls in syria, the whole discussion is going to be within the all-encompassing islamist family. and the people i supported, you know, democrats with small d, the reformers, the progressives, the secularists are going to be watching with frustration. they did a lousy job in the elections in egypt and other places because like i remember in my youth in 1968, we were happy with the student movements in spain and in paris and this and that, you know? we had long hair, and we ruse used to drink and think about the future and demonstrate in the streets, and that's changed. in egypt i love them, they're like my kids. they demonstrated, they didn't do retail politics. they didn't know what organization means. they didn't understand, you know, that politics is coalition. so now the islamists are at the helm. i'll say this, and my last point. what happened recently after that video and the reaction in egypt and benghazi -- benghazi's an act of terror, we know that, but let's talk about egypt. demonstrations in the rest of the arab world and the muslim
for the removal from power of president assad of syria, and again, without supplying them arms or helping the rebels and have clearly put ourselves on the cause of the rebels there. not to mention almost the entire leadership of al-qaeda is gone. they have been targeted and killed by the obama administration. osama bin laden no longer is a threat to the united states and neither is moammar gadhafi. and iran is nowhere closer to getting a nuclear weapon than they were before president obama took office. and america's prestige is up all over the world. the most popular person in europe today is barack obama. so people look differently and more kindly and more as a friend and partner to the united states than they ever did under george bush and dick cheney. i think this president has made a huge contribution in lifting the united states in the eyes of the world, and we are safer today than we ever were under george bush and dick cheney. 866-55-press, what do you say. >> announcer: radio meets telejigs. the "bill press show" now on current tv. of this democracy and see your
the supporters of al-assad and they see their backs to the wall and they have to fight to the death or they're going to get killed in other ways? is there any way out of the? >> that's a big problem. basically the regime is just beating the alawite's most horrible stories about the sunnis and what they want to do to them. these people really have their back against the wall and need to be smarter. it's just a doomsday scenario for them. the other minorities, you know, you're talking about christians. many christian groups -- [inaudible] off the top of my head i think it's a alawite% to 12%. it's not a small population. it's pretty big. it's not cohesive because you talk about pre-course. you're talking about searing christians, small numbers of protestants and what not, historians. so these groups support the regime. behrmann burrs are part of the security services. since they are all so scared time. >> this has been a really deep, well reported and he also took a lot of risks to gather this information, so we're very grateful you came and spoke about it. >> the original presented the risk
, assad does need to go. we need to work with moderates in opposition and provide them with military hardware and support financially so they can do battle. the citizens there, they are being slaughtered by the thousands. when it comes to libya, i thought what happened there is unacceptable. i thought the handling of it was unacceptable. we need to have a full and immediate investigation to make sure we find out what happened. more importantly, iran, my opponents said earlier we need a nuanced approach. there is no such thing. there is only one person who will stand with israel. >> another 30 seconds. >> i have three older brothers, all of whom served in the military. my oldest brother was career military. he served in vietnam. i have some sense of not only how tough and capable they are. that is why i believe the best we can do for our military is be very careful and thoughtful about when we ask them to go to war. we need to have clear objectives. we need to know what our plan is and how we plan to get out. >> you can take up to 40. >> we have the greatest fighting force in the hist
, the 13% alawite population that affiliates itself with the assad regime. what do you them will happen to them? do you think it can be foreseen if we decide to intervene in this changing government? >> thank you. and can you just send the mic. there we go. >> yes. . >> please identify yourself. [inaudible] from the american university of bay root. i want to ask -- [inaudible] that the 75% of what is -- [inaudible] the islamist party is not because islamic party because in egypt for 17 years not political parties. so the islamic party became more political. [inaudible] in to the system the political system. it's more political than islamic. and for hisham melhem mohammad -- what happened during the demonstration in egypt. he was in the -- [inaudible] visit to the european union in brussels and immediately said i'm against that -- [inaudible] but also we don't accept in cairo the frustration to attack the property, the diplomatic -- [inaudible] and i'm sorry against it . >>caller: pop. >> enact a law to stop the abuse of the free speech against other religions. >> okay. >> so a question
Search Results 0 to 40 of about 41 (some duplicates have been removed)